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Is my rosemary dying?


 
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Garlicbreath
Rank attained: Silver Birch Tree
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Location: Wexford

PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 9:18 pm    Post subject: Is my rosemary dying? Reply with quote

During the winter while tidying up around the garden I noticed that a branch in the centre of the rosemary bush was looking kind of dead. I cut it out and thought no more of it. Just assumed that it had been damaged or something. However, today I spotted another branch that was looking very dark, dried up and sort of... dead. I've cut this one out too but the rest of the bush is looking a bit sickly. Lots of the leaves are speckled yellow and look as if they're on the way out too. I took some pics. I'd be very grateful if someone could identify this mystery malady and suggest a remedy.


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This is the yellow speckling
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Close up of leaves left on bush
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Dead branch cut out of bush
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Garlicbreath
Rank attained: Silver Birch Tree
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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 9:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Trawling around the internet and found this http://www.greenculturesg.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=14865
Seems to suggest the problem might be too much water. Is this possible?? I suppose it has been a bit wet for the last year or two!
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Liparis
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PostPosted: Sun May 24, 2009 11:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It could be, Rosemary likes a well drained soil. Try a bit of gravel or sharp sand mixed through the soil around it, or in the planting hole if you decide to replace it.
Bill.

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medieval knievel
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PostPosted: Sun May 24, 2009 8:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

when is best to prune rosemary so it doesn't get too woody?
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Liparis
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PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2009 8:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I find it best to prune when new shoots are breaking otherwise I find it suffers die-back if done to early in the year.
Bill.

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Sarah Evans
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PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2009 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rosemary not keen on being in overly wet soil at all, find our own does well in an old butlers sink with lots of drainage.
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Garlicbreath
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PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2009 6:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is one of two pretty old bushes that have been in there for a long time. They're planted through a hole in the paving so the scope for digging is pretty limited. The second one seems OK so I'm not entirely convinced water is actually the issue. I will do some exploratory probing soon. Could it be dying of old age? However, I am relieved that no-one thinks it's a disease.
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Liparis
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PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2009 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

When planting in amongst paving, extra care needs to be taken. A good depth of soil needs to be taken out, good layer of gravel then return the soil mixed with sharp sand. Planting in this manner really needs to be treated as if planting in a container. Traffic on the paving compacts the soil around the plant making drainage difficult (I'm talking human traffic, which is compounded if vehicular traffic is using the area). It may be that there is more traffic around that plant than the other, or the other will soon catch up. Have you put in the paving in the last few years? Rosemary can live a very long time. I've worked with plant's of it much older than myself. The compacted soil around the plant could be preventing it from getting sufficient root spread. Because it needs good drained soil, it may not be an ideal situation for it to grow, something you may well not notice for sevaral years or more.
Also, don't forget this will all have been compounded with the cooler winter we have had for several years.
Bill.

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Garlicbreath
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PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2009 4:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Bill, that could be the problem. The paving's there in excess of 30 years and the plants are probably 15 - 20 years old (really not sure) I'm going to take some cuttings first then try digging in some grit. I may even be able to lift an adjacent paving slab and loosen the soil around them.
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